Jake White has named his Sharks line-up to face the Bulls at Kings Park this weekend. Ryan Kankowski starts in the number 8 jersey, with Willem Alberts preferred to Jean Deysel at blindside flank.
White had been true to his word in keeping the team virtually unchanged after Friday night’s good warm-up performance against the Lions. Deysel, who has had a bit of time off this week due to the birth of son Zanru, will play off the bench, as Marcell Coetzee completes the all-Springbok back row. In fact, Anton Bresler, picked at number 4, is the only non-capped member of the starting pack, with Boks galore in the form of Beast Mtawarira, Pieter-Steph du Toit and the du Plessis brothers.
Cobus Reinach retains the number 9 jersey ahead of benched Charl McLeod, in a backline that is unchanged and features Pat Lambie and Frans Steyn in the all-important 10-12 axis. Paul Jordaan, Odwa Ndungane, Lwazi Mvovo and SP Marais complete the starting line-up, one which boasts 11 Springboks in total. There are no Super Rugby debutants in the starting fifteen for the Sharks.
On the bench, Kyle Cooper, Dale Chadwick and Lourens Adriaanse will provide front-row cover, the last-named making his Super Rugby debute for the Sharks, having played for the Cheetahs last year. Stephan Lewies, in jersey 19, is uncapped at this level, as is backline replacement Heimar Williams. S’bura Sithole completes the match 23, after impressing at centre against the Lions. He will look to add to his tally of just two Super Rugby caps, won in 2013.
The Cell C Sharks
15. SP Marais (Marshall Security Crusaders)
14. Odwa Ndungane (Varsity College RFC)
13. Paul Jordaan (Varsity College RFC)
12. Frans Steyn (SA Home Loans Durban Collegians)
11. Lwazi Mvovo (Ricoh PMB Collegians)
10. Patrick Lambie (Jonsson College Rovers)
9. Cobus Reinach (SA Home Loans Durban Collegians)
8. Ryan Kankowski (Amanzimtoti Rugby Club)
7. Willem Alberts (SA Home Loans Durban Collegians)
6. Marcell Coetzee (SA Home Loans Durban Collegians)
5. Pieter-Steph du Toit (Jonsson College Rovers)
4. Anton Bresler (Jonsson College Rovers)
3. Jannie du Plessis (Marshall Security Crusaders)
2. Bismarck du Plessis (Captain) (Marshall Security Crusaders)
1. Tendai Mtawarira (Jonsson College Rovers)
16. Kyle Cooper (Jonsson College Rovers)
17. Dale Chadwick (Ricoh PMB Collegians)
18. Lourens Adriaanse (Amanzimtoti Rugby Club)
19. Stephan Lewies (Amanzimtoti Rugby Club)
20. Jean Deysel (Marshall Security Crusaders)
21. Charl McLeod (Varsity College RFC)
22. Heimar Williams (SA Home Loans Durban Collegians)
23. S’bura Sithole (UKZN Impi)